Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Two Boston Area Nonprofits Sue Over the Name "Big Sisters"

On January 1, 2008, the Boston Globe reported that a Boston area nonprofit (Big Sisters Association of Greater Boston) is suing another Boston area nonprofit (Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Massachusetts Bay) in federal court over the name "Big Sisters."  Here is an excerpt:

In a rare public dispute between two prominent local charities, the Big Sister Association of Greater Boston has sued Big Brothers Big Sisters of Massachusetts Bay for trademark infringement, alleging that Big Brothers' decision last year to add "Big Sisters" to its name has created public confusion about the groups' identities.

. . .

Big Sister, founded in 1951, provides guidance and support to young girls in the Boston area, while for most of its history Big Brothers of Massachusetts Bay, founded in 1949, focused on mentoring and supporting Boston-area young boys. In 1998, Big Brothers of Massachusetts Bay also began providing services to girls, although for the next eight years its name continued to suggest the group had a single-sex mission.

For the full article, see "Charities' Naming Fight Goes to Court: Big Sister Suing Group, Claiming Trademark Violated" in the Boston Globe.

DAB

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/nonprofit/2008/01/on-january-1-20.html

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